5.19.2012

day 12 - st. paul's, saatchi and night shooting

I'm now going to catch up on my free pass day and write about day 12 :)

But first, a funny I forgot to share... Remember how I mentioned that everyone I've met out here has been American? There was a group of people sitting in front of us at Les Mis that we started talking to before the show started and guess where they were from? Yup, Orem. Ha!

Today we went back to see St. Paul's Cathedral. It is just stunning inside. It amazes me the abilities they had in the 1600's. In my head, I don't give them enough credit for being so advanced. Sometimes I think of people from the 1700's and earlier as cavemen haha, I know better, but it still surprises me every time when I see things like St. Paul's Cathedral. The building was incredible.
We were able to climb stairs up to a gallery view in the dome of the cathedral (called the Whispering Gallery). It was really awesome being so high up and being able to look down into the dome and through the cathedral. There's also a small staircase you can climb to get to the top of the dome and go outside to see the city. The staircase was small and spiraled and super sketchy (or dodgy *said with english accent). There was a part right before getting to the top of the dome when you could stand on a metal plate and look through a hole covered with glass that showed you were at the very top of the dome. You could see from the top all the way to the bottom of the cathedral. Talk about a trip! I had major vertigo for sure, it was crazy. I'll put up the video I took from it.. unfortunately it does it no justice whatsoever. But it really was amazing.
Once we got to the top, the view was incredible. It was basically a living panorama of London. How fantastic! I wish we could've stayed up longer, I would've enjoyed more time up there.

After the cathedral, we went over to the Saatchi Gallery. Love love love! The gallery itself was beautiful. The rooms were large and had lovely, light wooden floors. And the majority of the exhibits were photography which made my heart sing. Some of them were beautiful, brilliant and I looooved them. I felt so inspired by so many of the images.  However, there were a few artists who's work I found to be almost offensive. One in particular was a female artist who took a bunch of photos of nude women (possibly just one girl, I'm not sure) in crude poses. It was basically just naked women, booze and sex. And the photography was awful. Bad lighting, poor composition and it looked like it was basically just straight images from a point and shoot. I thought maybe the artist statement would justify in some way the demeaning images of women she displayed, but in summary, all it said was, "girls doing what girls love!"................................ really? I don't know about other girls, but that's definitely not what I love. It was just offensive. Women complain about being objectified and disrespected and then they do crap like this. It was frustrating to me and embarrassing... bleh. Yucky. But on a more positive note, I really did love the gallery! There was an exhibit in the basement (keep in mind these rooms are pretty large), where the artist lined the floors and walls with an iron "tub" that was about shoulder high and filled it with used oil. It was incredible. It was so perfectly still that it mirrored the ceiling above and it honestly took me about 30 seconds for my mind to realize that it was a reflection and even then, it took a minute for my head to sort it all out and figure out what was going on. It was trippy. And absolutely beautiful. I never thought I'd say that about used oil.

We later walked down the street to a little gallery shop that was full of original prints from famous photographers. Super cool to see them. There were some Brian Duffy's and... others... I don't even remember really. But there were some beautiful prints of the beetles, David Bowie, Twiggy, etc...

After a few hours of chill time, eating, etc.... and waiting until dark, a few of us went out to night shoot. I'm not terribly excited about the images that came from it, but some of them were fun. I think the experience was the best part.

And that was that for day 12 :)

(This is the clip of the view from the top of the dome. It's kind of hard to really get a sense of how amazing it was... so just imagine ;) ... and forgive my filming abilities, I'm slowly getting better. But it's slow.)
video

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